Foreign Office Minister for Africa, James Duddridge, visited Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire from 3-7 April 2016 to deepen business collaboration and promote shared interests on prosperity and security. In a wide-ranging visit the Minister underscored the importance of West Africa to UK objectives. He was joined in Ghana by the Prime Minister’s first Trade Envoy for Ghana, Adam Afriyie MP.
In Ghana the Minister met with President Mahama where he discussed the importance of credible elections. He also attended the official handover of the Dodowa hospital with the President, which was built through a combination of UK Export Finance and UK Trade and Investment support. The Minister also met with other government Ministers where he reaffirmed UK support to Ghana on counter terrorism.
Minister Duddridge also spoke with UK businesses operating in Ghana and launched the ‘Exporting is Great’ campaign, which presents live exporting opportunities to businesses across a range of media outlets and digital channels.
In Cote d’Ivoire the Minister laid a wreath at Grand Bassam, the site of March’s terrorist attack. With President Ouattara and Ivoirian Ministers, he discussed increasing economic ties between the UK and Cote d’Ivoire.
Following the visit, the Minister said:
I was delighted to be part of the handover of the Dodowa hospital; a truly world class infrastructure project delivered through UK support.
The UK and Ghana share prosperity objectives. Using UK expertise and development assistance we want to drive Ghanaian growth and create opportunities for both Ghanaian and UK businesses.
In Cote d’Ivoire I was moved to visit Grand Bassam where 19 people were killed and many more injured on a beach in a brutal attack by terrorists. My thoughts are with all those affected.
I look forward to working with Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire on a range of issues in the future, from increasing trade collaboration to addressing international security challenges.